An Apple A Day…

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Perhaps a more appropriate title would be ‘appleS‘ a day, because I have been canning apples every day for a week! Mrs. Homesteader was blessed with some apples, and she shared them with me…two BIG boxes of them. I have made applesauce, apple butter and apple topping…pints and quarts of it!

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I have really enjoyed doing it. Bud helped a lot with the peeling and cutting out bad spots. I told Mrs. Homesteader that she helped ‘break me in’ to the canning process. I had bought a water bath canner years ago to make jelly–I had bought the ingredients at the grocery store. I’ve never had anything else to can, except for the time I tried to make lemon marmalade from the lemons on our tree at the last place we lived. It was horrible! We ended up throwing it out. I know this stuff is good, because we’ve already eaten some of it.

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We were at the Hardware store last week, and we found (and bought) an apple peeler that peels, slices and cores. It helped speed up the process so much! It’s a really cool gadget. You can remove the corer/slicer off the end, and it will just peel the apples, too, if you want.

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The apples were so sweet, that I didn’t have to sweeten the applesauce I made. I only made one batch of it with a little honey, and then realized after it cooled, that it didn’t even really need it, so the rest was made without it.

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This was done on my little two-burner camp stove, too. ๐Ÿ™‚ It was alright. I did just fine with it! It was fun.

I know this is ‘old hat’ and a ‘drop in the bucket’ for all of you seasoned, pro-canners out there, but I’m riding high on my success! I feel so good that I have some apple products put away for a later time. I’m hoping to get a pressure canner at some point in the future so that I can process the other things that require that method. I’m hoping we’ll be up to our ears with things to can when we start our real garden next spring.

Hope you all are having a great Monday!

12 thoughts on “An Apple A Day…

  1. So wonderful, Kara. I bet it smelled so good, too. Good job! I made applesauce last night just for a snack (only used up 9 apples) all the kids loved it…with a touch of cinnamon and nutmeg, and vanilla.

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    1. Mmmm…your combination of spices sounds delicious! I use to make it in the crock pot to pack in Bud’s lunch, but this is the first time I have ever canned it.

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  2. Tina made apple butter a while back with apples that were given to them. I was going to give it a try, but Tom doesn’t care for it, so I thought, why bother? She cooked it in the crock pot and it sounded so easy. Since this is apple season, maybe I should go ahead and make a few jars just to have on hand. Do you mind sharing your recipes? I have mostly canned meats and veggies, so something sweet would be nice. I would need to go to the farmers’ market on Airline, I guess, to get enough apples to make it worth while.

    I got georgia peaches a couple of years ago and froze them in pint freezer bags. We are enjoying them, but you have to eat them up in a couple of days or they turn dark.

    You will really enjoy a pressure canner when you get one. I got my first one at Walmart, then, got a bigger one after a year or so as I needed to can quarts and the smaller one does not accommodate anything larger than pints. I made salsa in half pints in the water bath. It is so satisfying putting up your own stuff.

    I have a dehydrator and did that a few years ago and bagged that up in vacuum bags. Which reminds me, I probably need to begin doing some of that again.

    How are the chicks?

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    1. I heard she has been canning a lot of things from their garden. I use to make my applesauce in the crockpot, too, and I agree that it’s very easy! I only made small batches in the crockpot, so it was perfect. I always just ‘eyeballed’ the amounts. I think I usually used about 6-8 apples at a time. I put lemon juice and cinnamon with a little bit of water in the bottom (not too much). I just guessed at the amounts. My crockpot is pretty hot on high, and I stirred it frequently. I think it only took 2-3 hours or so.

      For the large amount of applesauce I just canned, I just put about 1/2 cup apple cider (the real, fresh pressed stuff) in a large stock pot of apples with 1/4 cup lemon juice. I think the lemon juice gives it a bit of a tart ‘bite’, but it also prevents it from turning brown. I cooked it down, stirring frequently. I used a stick blender at the very end to make it smooth, and then added cinnamon to taste. No sugar at all. Bud always thought it tasted like apple pie, because I usually used tart apples, or a mixture of tart and sweet. I’ve read that it’s best to use a variety of different apples for applesauce, as it gives it better flavor.

      For the apple butter, I used this recipe as a ‘base’. I always fudge with recipes, though. If I remember right, I also put some nutmeg in it, though the recipe didn’t call for it. It had a really unique and good flavor I thought. The house smelled like spiced apple cider when I made it. http://apple-of-my-eye.com/2013/10/02/pumpkin-spice-apple-butter/

      The chicks are doing GREAT! The are eating and hopping around a lot. Then, from time to time, they will go back to ‘Mama’ and tuck themselves underneath her. ๐Ÿ™‚ Still only four chicks. I think I’m getting ready to remove the unhatched eggs. She is still tenaciously sitting on them, though…so…I’m not sure what we’ll do.

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  3. I love that you made the applesause with honey to sweeten it. That’s my kind of applesauce. We don’t even use sugar anymore. I sweeten everything with honey, even the green iced tea I make. Now who is going to eat all that you’ve canned?

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    1. Good for you for cutting the sugar! Honey has such a great flavor, and I’ve heard if you eat local honey, it can help you with immunities to allergies.

      Well…I guess we’ll just have to have some grannie-type guests to come visit and help us eat it all. It’ll stay good long enough til we can get this house presentable. ๐Ÿ™‚

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  4. OH YUMM!!!
    Your apples look so good all canned up! I’m sure you are so excited and it will even be better when it’s cold out side and you open a jar and remember all your work you put into making it!! It is so rewarding to put up your own food!

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    1. I’m really settling in to this way of life and all that goes with it, and YES, it does feel very rewarding. ๐Ÿ™‚ I turned the apples down the first time she offered them to me, but when she offered the second time, I jumped on in! Maybe your post on canning the tomatoes inspired me? ๐Ÿ˜‰ I hope you are settling in to your new schedule and that things are going well for you, Kim!

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  5. I’m very impressed! I only canned once, about 40 years ago, at Tish’s house with Grandma Woodruff. All I remember is peeling more tomatoes than I thought possible. Then chopping onion, peppers, etc. I have not even thought about canning since then. Maybe I could try againโ€ฆThe aroma of the apples cooking really got to me, lol

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    1. What a great memory, Lockie! I don’t remember doing anything like that with either of my grandmothers, though a neighbor lady who only had a boy, invited me down to her house to help her with making grape jelly. I was very young…don’t know that I realized what I was doing. Maybe she was babysitting me? Anyway, I remember pushing the grapes through a cone shaped sieve with a wooden mallet of sorts.

      I highly recommend that you try it! Water bath canners can be picked up at Walmart, and I don’t think they are very expensive…but even if you just make a small batch of applesauce that you don’t can….HEY…it’s FALL and apples are fashionable and in season. It would be a travesty not to. LOL. Oh…the house really did smell so good while I was making all of these things!

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